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It’s not often holiday indulgences combine with a healthier approach to life but Saga Sapphire’s 15-night ‘The Volcanic Isles’ cruise departing Southampton on 24 November 2019 allows guests to enjoy tempting food markets, Casablanca cocktails and a Madeira winery lunch and tasting, while keeping active both ashore and on board the chic and friendly ship.


A lifestyle coach and a fitness expert give practical guidance to guests as they sail on the cruise to Funchal; La Palma; Tenerife; Lanzarote; Agadir; Casablanca, and Leixoes, Portugal. A pampering session at the ship’s spa which is renowned for innovative therapies proves a well-deserved reward for the most dedicated.


There’s also a pedometer challenge and the diverse landscapes of the Canaries offer walking and cycling routes from forests and lava fields to beaches of black, volcanic sands. Rewarding walks in Agadir, to a spice-scented market and to the Kasbah, dating from the 1500s, are also on the itinerary.

Alternatively, there’s a tour through the desert to Marrakech, with views of the snow-capped Atlas Mountains, plus the option of an overnight stay in the mystical city. Casablanca, established in the seventh century by Berbers, is home to both the second largest mosque in the world and the only Jewish museum in the Arab world, and guests can relax with a traditional scrub at a Hamman. Saga Sapphire sails back to Southampton on 9 December 2019, so guests can return from their cruise feeling fit, relaxed and ready for Christmas!


One reason for Saga Cruises continued popularity is the fact that there is so much included in the price. Wine at lunch and dinner, free bottled water on excursions, gratuities and bar service charges are all included, so too is all speciality dining, Wi-Fi and shuttle bus transfers from the ship to the centre of the port town or city. Another unique feature is the complimentary Chauffeur Service for passengers living up to 250 miles from their departure port; as an alternative there’s free parking at the port, domestic flights, as well as rail and coach options.

  • 23rd November 2018

Gary Buchanan

Edinburgh-born Gary Buchanan has been a travel writer for over 30 years. He has been a specialist cruise writer for 25 years contributing to leading British publications including national newspapers and consumer magazines. He is the author of five books about cruising and spends over seven months every year at sea sailing the world’s oceans.